Junk Food Addiction Begins in the Womb?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2005
Junk Food Addiction Begins in the Womb?
Thu, 05-09-2013 - 11:51am

Women know they shouldn't smoke, drink alcohol, or do drugs while they're pregnant. But a new study on rats suggests that even females who eat junk food during pregnancy may be setting up their children for a lifetime of addiction.

A team of Australian scientists found a chemical basis behind this junk food addiction, pinpointing psychoactive chemicals that are produced as a reward response and trigger a natural high in the brain.

"When we eat foods high in fat and sugar, this increases the release of opioids and the feel-good peptide dopamine in the reward centre of the brain and creates a pleasurable sensation that keeps us going back for more," Dr. Beverly Mühlhäusler, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Adelaide who led the study, told The Huffington Post in an email.


Interesting!  How concerned are you about your diet during pregnancy?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-07-2013
Fri, 05-10-2013 - 7:58am

Wow.  That's really interesting.  It makes total sense to me though. What you eat, your baby eats.  I try to eat super healthy during pregnancy so hopefully I'm on the right track.  I'll be keeping this in mind all pregnancy for sure! 

Jenni ~ Expecting baby #2 in January 2014!